The best vegan baklava with flaky filo pastry, walnuts, pistachios, vegan butter and the ultimate orange lemon syrup featuring coconut nectar or agave instead of honey. Finish with a luscious drizzle of dark chocolate and a pinch of Fleur de Sel flakes to make it next level!
Preheat your oven to 350”F. In a bowl combine the nuts, cinnamon and the zest from half an orange and set aside.
Brush a 9x13 inch oven proof baking dish with some of the vegan butter.
Cut the fillo dough sheets in half and start layering 10 of them in the bottom of the pan, one by one, brushing each one with some of the melted better before topping with another. Sprinkle with a quarter of the nuts all over. (keep the remaining filo sheets covered with a damp tea towel so they don’t dry out and tear).
Layer 4 more filo sheets brushing them with melted butter in between. Sprinkle another quarter of the nuts and layer another 4 filo sheets on top. Sprinkle with another quarter of the nuts and layer 4 more filo dough sheets buttered in between.
Top with the rest of the nuts and the remaining 10 layers of filo sheets, making sure you brush each one of them with the butter in between.
Using a sharp knife cut the Baklava into 2 inch strips, then make slightly angled horizontal cuts to create a diamond pattern. Or you can just cut it into squares or whatever shape you like. It’s very IMPORTANT that you do the cutting before baking it.
Bake the Baklava in the preheated 350"F oven for 1 hour until golden brown on top.
Meanwhile make the the orange syrup by whisking together the orange juice, lemon juice, coconut nectar (agave or maple) and the remaining zest from half an orange. Pour it all over the Baklava once it comes out of the oven. Allow it to sit at room temperature for a few hours or overnight for the baklava to soak it all up. (I like to park it back in the cold oven overnight)
Optional: break the chocolate into small pieces and place it in the top pan of a double boiler over hot water. Stir until nicely melted and using a spoon drizzle some all over the Baklava. Garnish with some crushed pistachios and sea salt flakes and enjoy !
Make sure to cut the baklava into diamonds or square before baking. This will prevent the filo from crumbling once cooked.
Keeping the baklava crispy comes down to using the right amount of syrup and storing it properly. Pour the syrup over the hot baklava as soon as it comes out of the oven then give it plenty of time to absorb every single drop of it before serving. Once completely cooled just store in a cold oven or kitchen counter away from humidity to keep crisp It keeps well at room temperature for up to one week. Do Not Refrigerate!